Q. Blessings to you and your work. Your comments are greatly appreciated and used in our Bible studies.
We have a question re the recent comments on psalm 83. Much as it seems to fit todays situation Hengstenberg points out that the Amelekites mentioned as part of the federation were wiped out in the days of Hezekiah and never heard of again. Is it therefore not more likely that the psalm refers to a ‘confederation which destroyed itself in the days when the Amelekites were still around and that it is us nowadays who want to read more into it than was meant?
A. None of the nations named in Psalm 83 exist by their ancient names today, and several of the people groups have disappeared as well. The Amalekites, Edomites, and Philistines were all wiped out to the last person, and serious doubt exists where the Ammonites and Moabites are concerned. Yet nowhere in the Bible is a battle like the one Psalm 83 speaks of described.
This leads many scholars to conclude that it’s the people currently living in the lands occupied by those ancient nations who are involved. When you look at their proximity to Israel (they’re all next door neighbors) and their unexplained absence from from the roster of Ezekiel 38, it’s logical to conclude that Psalm 83 is a battle yet to come and that it precedes Ezekiel 38.
It also explains how Israel could be lulled into a false sense of peace to permit Ezekiel’s battle to take place, and how they could bury the enemy dead in a place that currently doesn’t belong to them but is said to be part of Israel in Ezekiel 39:11.